By July 1, the population of the occupied mainland territories of Ukraine quite suddenly discovered that they had a new “gas supplier,” which was the “Chernomorneftegaz” company.
At first glance, this “limited liability company”, “hiding behind” such disguises as the “branches” of “Luganskgaz”, “Donbassgaz”, “Zaporozhgaz” and “Khersongaz”, became simply the “namesake” of the Ukrainian state-owned enterprise, seized by the occupiers in 2014 , but however, everything is far from so simple.
The mentioned “LLC” with the number 9704210635 was registered in April 2023 in Moscow with a certain Nikita Tsarichenko as the general director, whose “full namesake” is a Russian ice hockey player of “second-class freshness”, now playing for the Moscow region “Captain”.
Further, the “Moscow” “Chernomorneftegaz” was re-registered at the end of June 2024 to a “convenient address” in Rostov-on-Don, where there are dozens of offices, but even earlier, in April 2024, Tsarichenko was replaced in it by Valery Bratkov, while the founders of this company are carefully hidden in Russian registers, and the “LLC” website is a hastily made “business card” that has not yet been filled out even to the minimum.
The mentioned Bratkov, until July 2023, held the position of chief engineer at “Gazprom Transgaz Yugorsk” for eight years, and in general he worked in the “Gazprom” structure for more than 20 years, but was fired, as the local “media” stated, after the explosion on May 16 on the Yelets-1 gas pipeline in the village of Lykhma, when four people died.
Bratkov also became one of the defendants in the large-scale case of his previous boss, Vyacheslav Yugay, who became a “scapegoat” for multibillion theft during the overhaul of the “Urengoy-Novopskov” gas pipeline with a clear “Moscow trace”, but also stole “in little things” for dozens of million during the construction and repair of service facilities in Nadym.
It is obvious that Bratkov became another Russian corrupt official sent by the Kremlin to the occupied territories instead of prison.

However, in this whole story with the “Moscow-Rostov” “Chernomorneftegaz” as an obvious “daughter”, or rather “granddaughter” of Gazprom, there is also a clear Crimean trace.
On May 27, 2024, it was this “LLC” that “established” another structure in occupied Simferopol – “Chernomortransgaz”, and its “legal address” is indicated as Kirova Avenue, 52, that is, the well-known head office of the “old, Crimean” “Chernomorneftegaz”.
Moreover, the occupiers appointed Alexander Kuznetsov from the Sverdlovsk region, the former “CEO” of the “Crimean” “Chernomorneftegaz” since 2018, who was “dismissed” in April 2024, as the “CEO” for Chernomortransgaz.
All these ups and downs have a simple basis: after the cessation of illegal hydrocarbon production on the Black Sea shelf in 2022, Crimea became a gas consumer instead of a donor, and the “Crimean” “Chernomorneftegaz” became interesting to the occupiers and “Gazprom” due to its infrastructure and underground storage facilities.
At the same time, the Russian invaders will supply gas to the occupied mainland through the described gaskets already from “Gazprom”, and for the same purposes they are hastily laying a “mainland” gas pipeline from Rostov to Crimea. Bratkov’s skills in disappearing billions while repairing gas pipelines make him literally an “indispensable” specialist for the bosses of the Russian gas monopolist in the conditions of the front-line zone.
Therefore, the current “change of legal entities” is not accidental and becomes a harbinger of even more large-scale aggressor’s gas scams.

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